Legendary Tales. Timeless Engagement.

The Wayside Inn is a one-of-a-kind destination for special programs and events that will connect you with history in ways that will delight you. Explore our calendar below.

Celebrating Longfellow: A Dinner & Presentation with Dr. Paul Johnston

The Wayside Inn Foundation presents

Celebrating Longfellow: A Dinner & Presentation with Dr. Paul Johnston

Thursday, May 9, 2024
$60 per person / $50 TWIF members*

6pm: arrival and hors d’oeuvres
6:30pm: seated dinner
7:15pm: presentation by
Dr. Paul Johnston

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was a convivial man and a convivial poet. Like many who enjoy good company, he enjoyed good stories shared among friends. In Tales of a Wayside Inn, published in 1863, Longfellow imaginatively gathers a group of friends at an inn a pleasant day’s carriage ride west of Cambridge, Massachusetts, along the post road between Boston and New York. These friends, easily recognizable as acquaintances of Longfellow, take turns telling stories. The stories they tell reflect their differing cultural backgrounds and interests. In so doing, Longfellow presents an America different than that of his fellow New England writers: an America of immigrants, an America of persons of diverse religious beliefs and differing national and cultural backgrounds, but all friends nevertheless. If we expand our view further, we find Longfellow expanding his view as well, telling stories of Native Americans and French-speaking Acadians and artists and craftsmen and lovers from around the world, with women figuring more prominently than men. When we look at Longfellow’s total achievement, we see a breadth not found in any other American writer, with a generosity and sympathy to match.

Dr. Paul Johnston is a professor emeritus at the State University of New York at Plattsburgh, where he taught courses in American literature, science and literature, and Shakespeare. He is the host of the podcast Fireside Poems, featuring the poems of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, as well as the podcasts Dr. J’s American Passages and Dr. J’s Shakespeare.

Advanced registration required. Call 978-443-1776 or visit Resy.

*TWIF members: call the front desk to purchase your tickets, 978-443-1776

The event is finished.


May 09 2024


6:00 pm



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